John Eller is a seasoned executive with more than 23 years of service in public administration and health and human services leadership.
John began his career as a local department of social services social worker and understands the stress and secondary trauma associated with this type of work. Prior to joining HMA, he served as the director of social services in Mecklenburg County, North Carolina where he led the largest social services agency in the state. His portfolio included oversight of social work programs in both child and adult welfare and protection; behavioral health programming; aging and caregiver community-based services and long-term services and supports (LTSS); senior nutrition; early childhood development and education; economic assistance programs (Medicaid, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), energy, and childcare subsidy); co-located Medicaid staff within healthcare settings; and non-emergency medical transportation (NEMT). John also managed an integrated social services agency, community action agency, child advocacy center, and critical access behavioral health agency during his tenure as director of social services in Catawba County, North Carolina.
As county manager and chief administrative officer for Davie County government, John served as a liaison with constituents to create relationships and understanding between and among individuals and groups to develop policies that yield improvements in the community. His portfolio included oversight of health-related services including emergency medical services, preparedness, and health and human services (social services, public health, veterans’ services, domestic violence, and senior services).
John has partnered with decision-makers at the local, state, and national level to assure program effectiveness and disseminate best practices. His work has spanned several sectors to foster unique partnerships that develop innovative services, programs, and policies aimed at building healthier communities and serving vulnerable populations. He has participated in various community needs assessments during his career and notes the importance of hearing those who have lived experience in planning efforts. He also sees the connection that the social determinants of health, program integration, and collective impact models have with serving the “whole” person.
John values strategic planning and continuous improvement efforts that support the ability for community-based organizations and the public sector to achieve shared outcomes. He has a passion for system alignment and successfully integrated a behavioral health, school health, public health, child welfare, and federally qualified health center (FQHC) model to maximize funding and reduce duplication among systems to achieve better outcomes for children and families.
He has served on many state workgroups to help support managed care plan expansion for special populations in North Carolina. He has an interest in the intersection between evidence-based programs and alignment of the child welfare system’s Title IV-E Family First Prevention Services Act and community-based organization and providers to increase timely access to services for children and families.
John was appointed as a member of the North Carolina Institute of Medicine. He served as president of the North Carolina Association of County Directors of Social Services and president of the North Carolina Guardianship Association. He served two terms on the North Carolina General Assembly’s Joint Study Commission on Aging and two terms on the North Carolina Human Resources Commission. He was appointed to the North Carolina Child and Family Improvement Initiative in 2022, North Carolina Child Welfare Reform Task Force in 2021, and Medicaid Transformation State Foster Care Plan Design Team in 2021. In 2006, he received the Presidential Volunteer Award from President George W. Bush for his work in disproportionately affected communities in Mecklenburg County (Charlotte). He also served as an adjunct instructor for graduate students in public administration programs at the University of North Carolina-Greensboro and Appalachian State University.
John is a graduate of the Senior Executive Institute at the University of Virginia-Weldon Cooper Center for Public Service and a credentialed manager with the International City & County Management Association (ICMA). He earned a Master of Business Administration from the McColl School of Business at Queens University and his bachelor’s degree in social work from Appalachian State University.